Saturday, January 22, 2011

Aparna Popat

Aparna Popat is one of the best known former badminton players of India. She holds the amazing record of winning the Indian National badminton 8 times in a row. (Earlier Madhumita Bisht (Madhumita Goswami) had the distinction of having won the National Badminton championships 7 times in a row).

Aparna Popat
Aparna started playing badminton at the CCI (Cricket Club of India) courts in Mumbai, at the age of 8. Anil Pradhan (former National doubles champion) who was the badminton coach at CCI, saw her talent & encouraged her to take up badminton seriously.

Anil Pradhan coached her for 8 years, till she shifted base & moved on to Bangalore to train at the Prakash Padukone badminton academy for the next 7 years. She then further moved on to the SAI center to train under coach Ganguly Prasad who also helped shape P. Gopichand's career.

Aparna Popat won the National Junior badminton title first in 1989, and there was no looking back after that. She bagged her first Senior National title when she defeated Manjusha Kanwar (Manjusha Pawangadkar) at Pune in 1998. This title win then became an yearly routine that carried on for 8 years at a stretch.

Fact File:

Aparna Popat was born on: January 18, 1978
She hails from: Mumbai, India
Employed with: IOC

Notable Achievements:

Aparna won the National Badminton championship title 8 times in a row.

Aparna won the Silver medal at the World Junior Badminton championships that was held in Denmark in 1996.

She bagged the Silver medal at the Commonwealth Games at Kuala Lampur in 1998, and was also the French Open winner the same year. It was also in 1998 that she won the senior National title for the first time.

Aparna was ranked 16 in the world, in 1999.
She won a Bronze medal at the Manchester Commonwealth Games in 2002
Aparna also represented India at the Sydney Olympics in 2000 & the Athens Olympics in 2004.

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